The Grain Marketing Board yesterday held its first annual general meeting since 1931.
GMB was initially founded as the Maize Control Board in 1931 and was only renamed Grain Marketing Board in 1951 when other grains were added to its portfolio.
In an interview after the meeting, acting GMB board chairperson Dr Ellen Gwaradzimba said the parastatal was now required to hold annual general meetings in line with the corporate governance framework.
"We have not been doing it all along because we had been concentrating on the Strategic Grain Reserve of the country but now we have separated that role from the commercial services that we now offer," said Dr Gwaradzimba.
"The GMB is therefore now required by the corporate governance framework of parastatals and State enterprises to hold annual general meetings to inform the public of their performance since they have gone commercial."
She added that as parastatals they were required to make public their activities and in a way that showed that they were accountable to the public.
GMB general manager Mr Albert Mandizha also revealed that the organisation's revenue from commercial activities increased by 26 percent from US$11 686 245 for the year ending March 2010 to US$14 747 293 for the year ended 31 March 2011.
"Other income made up of Strategic Grain Reserve support handling and storage fees increased by a massive 563 percent from US$4 403 834 in 2010 to US$29 204 534 for the year ended 31 March 2011 due to the increased grain intake volumes.
"The consolidated loss for the year was reduced by 66 percent from US$18 209 283 in 2010 to US$6 210 184 for the year ended 31 March 2011," explained Mr Mandizha.
Such an achievement, he said, reflected the prudent business strategies implemented during the year under review after learning from the full year of operating under the multi-currency system.
Mr Mandizha also said that GMB had since made a profit of US$251 986 after overturning the losses stated above. This, he said, indicated that the parastatal was now on a recovery path that allowed it to generate revenue and operate viably.
He, however, lamented the continued loss of grain in storage due to the deteriorating condition of the silos most of which are in dire need of urgent rehabilitation.